By Sebastian Scherf
On Wednesday last week, the Mars Hill College Cycling Team left to Frisco Texas. The women’s team consisted of Sarah Felpel, Sarah Huber, and Catherine Harnden, and the men’s team included Tim Jenkinson, Robert Maitland Jones, Jeremiah Dyer, and Sebastian Scherf. After a long day of traveling, we arrived at our huge host mansion with a sweet pool, Jacuzzi, and fireplace. Thanks to Doug Clark for being a great host, lending us equipment and even cooking for us. Especially liked the pool.
However, we did not get a lot of time to tan, because our coach Hugh Moran wanted us to get some track practice in before nationals. The Superdrome is definitely one of the nicest tracks I have ever ridden on. It has super steep banking and is quite fast. After a quick training, we went back to the house and prepared mentally for the races the next day.
The next day started with the 4k time trial for the men , and the 500m women’s time trial, followed by the 1k men’s time trial and the women’s 3k. Jeremiah Dyer ended up in eleventh, the team’s first top result at the 2012 collegiate track nationals.
The second day of racing included the 200m sprint time trials flying start, men and women, and the points race qualifying heats and finals. Tim was our outstanding rider of the second day, qualified for both, the match sprints and the point race final. He did well in both races and scored lots of points for the Team Omnium.
The scratch race qualifying heats and finals, the coed Team Sprint, and the 4k team pursuit were the events of the last day. Tim qualified for the scratch race final with an impressive ride in his qualifying heat. Both the men and women 4k team pursuit were super fast, with the men averaging above 49 km/h, almost 31 mp/h. One of the highlights and my personal favorite event of the weekend was the coed team sprint: 2 girls and 4 men riders start at the same time, with everybody leading one lap until he drops out.
Three long days of racing and tanning in the heat of Texas, we finally got rewarded with US Collegiate Cycling National Championship medals for the 4th place in the Team Omnium. So far, this is the best start of the Mars Hill College Cycling team into a season, so everybody on the team is quite excited about the numerous victories that will follow this great start. Of course a big thanks to our sponsors for making it all possible.